This image is from a couple of years ago, but the story still applies.
This girl in my arms is Peg, the duck. After we moved to the farm I decided on purchasing a few more ducks to add to our existing flock of four. I went to a local barnyard sanctuary and found Peg and one other female kept in a duck yard… with 80-some drakes. If you know anything about male ducks, then you know they have insatiable appetites for mating. Imagine how battered these two ladies were! I took them both and brought them home along with a drake. Our flock grew to seven.
Peg recovered quickly, along with her other female friend. I thought she was a badass then, and she continued to show her strength after 2 male goose attacks (that gander is no longer here), and a fox that preyed on my flock before Aaxlu arrived. Still she was friendly, followed me, and I so appreciated her resilience.
On this particular afternoon here, I found Peg who had wandered too far from home. Usually after I finish farm work for the day, I shower and change into “real clothes”—hence the dress. You’d think I would learn that this is when all the action starts. 🤣 I had just grabbed my camera to take a photo outdoors and I headed into the woods. That’s where I found Peg. She was attacked by a heron and pierced through the chest. She died shortly thereafter.
As for the photo, I remember I had turned the camera on and set the tripod down for this angle. My phone and timer are on the other side of my skirt. When I found peg nearby, I abandoned my little photo shoot and scooped up Peg. It wasn’t until I returned for the camera and phone later, blood stained from tending to my duck, that I found this image on the camera. It was like a little Christmas gift from Peg.
I’m sharing this story because I continue to be impressed by the strength of animals. Not just with Peg but with Finnegan, my horribly abused and rescued Clydesdale. This holiday season, if you intend to purchase a pet or animal, please consider adopting from a shelter, sanctuary, or rescue organization. Their work and funding is needed and the animals, at least in my experience, are so deserving of a second chance.
Angela is the farmer and content creator behind Axe & Root Homestead LLC. This historic six-acre permaculture farm is home to two Clydesdale horses, ten honeybee hives, five sheep, two guardian dogs, barn cats and a flock of 40 geese and ducks. The farm produces maple syrup, fruit from a small orchard and loads of garden produce for consumption, preservation and donation to the local food pantry.
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